More people are relying on investment professionals to help them meet their financial needs. The call for us to play a more effective role in corporate governance is getting louder. The assets that we manage are increasing and so too are our responsibilities, and the need to demonstrate that we can deliver on these.
Andy Haldane, executive director at the Bank of England, believes that the profession is in the ‘age of asset management’. He notes that ‘investment is a key bridge between end-savers and end-borrowers, between the financial and real parts of the economy.’
‘As the banking system continues to de-risk, strengthening that bridge could well strengthen both the financial system and the wider economy.’
However, few truly understand the value of the investment profession or what those who work across it actually do. In order to deliver the contribution Haldane speaks of, the investment profession must be trusted and understood.
CFA Institute’s CEO, Paul Smith, CFA, observes, ‘Many clients don’t perceive the value we add for the fees we charge. We have to work harder to convince them that investment professionals work both to meet clients’ investment objectives and to create positive social impact.’
We, as a profession, must address these issues and CFA UK is working to deliver change in a number of ways:
- Helping investment professionals develop their technical competencies and to learn to put their clients’ interests first
- Explaining the investment profession to our stakeholders and by listening to them to ensure we can improve our value for them;
- Encouraging investment professionals to sign up to and abide by our code of ethics and standards of professional conduct.
In each of these areas, our work is directed by our members.